Staff blogs | Sirane Ltd

Sirane makes its theatrical debut.... kind of

Our anti-slip absorbent floor mats meant the show could go on...

SO, last week Sirane took to the stage. You wouldn't have known we were there, yet played a vital part. We helped a play set in the First World War go on..... because as you all know, the play must go on. And the product that made its theatrical bow was a product designed for use in operating theatres - yet was used in a scene set in a kitchen in Accrington. Intrigued?...... Read on.

My wife, Anna, is a keen thespian. She's heavily involved with a local amateur dramatics group (The LADS, based on the Shropshire/Welsh border for anyone interested). She's so heavily involved that I have also become involved by default, joining their committee as marketing guru. I'm not sure I had a choice but it kind of made sense as I was regularly being asked to do it anyway.

Anway, last week they were performing Accrington Pals. The play, which was performed to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, is about a 'Pals Brigade' formed in the Lancashire town and sent to fight in the trenches, and about the families left at home desperately waiting for news. Spoiler alert..... it doesn't end particularly well for them. 

One scene, set in an Accrington kitchen, involves one of the characters taking a bath... and on set they had an old tin bath from the period. The only problem was, and to be fair the bath was nearly a century old, it didn't hold water. Luckily Anna does evidently listen occasionally when I discuss my job, as she struck upon the bright idea of using our anti-slip absorbent floor mats, designed for use in operating theatres, in the bottom of the bath. The logic was that a) it would be okay for the actor to sit/lie on, in fact more comfortable than a cold tin bath, and that b) it would remove any risk of the stage becoming wet and dangerous.

Obviously they could have had the bath empty and pretended.... but they wanted to make it look real, and wanted to have water poured over the actor in question. Apparently in the dress rehearsal they were tentatively pouring some water over, hoping it would be absorbed, and by the final night, safe in the knowledge that it did genuinely hold 3L per square metre, were properly tipping buckets over the poor lad's head...  

So, it may the most unusual use to date of our anti-slip absorbent floor mats, but we were certainly more than happy to help.

MARK LINGARD, MARKETING

A bit of organised chaos.... and a trip to Dusseldorf

SO last week I took what currently seems to be an annual trip to Dusseldorf. Why Dusseldorf? Because that's where Medica is housed, and in the world of medical and healthcare all roads seem to lead to Dusseldorf. 

It's actually surprising in a way that there aren't more medical and healthcare shows than there are. I've been asked a few times to investigate the options, and to be honest the options are limited. You're talking either the gargantuan behemoth of a show that is Medica, or very small, targeted shows for 'surgeons specialised in operations on big toes' and the like, and very little inbetween. 

Gap in the market..... yes there is. But who will fill it?

And so myself and a colleague headed for Germany, to see what was going on, and size it up for next year.... we make a small amount of niche but excellent medical and healthcare products, such as anti-slip absorbent floor mats, absorbent tourniquet drapes, and 95 kPa specimen transport bags, and we wanted to see how our products might fit with what everyone else was doing. 

There's a few things to note about Medica. It's ridiculously large, there's a lot of companies doing pretty much the same, and (somewhat ironically for a healthcare show) it's hard to find a healthy bite to eat. 

Let's deal with those things one by one. It's very, very large. I think there's about 18 halls, all with at least a few hundred exhibitors. Some might say too big, and not targeted enough. There's a lot of companies selling the same, mostly from India and the Far East, and you genuinely wonder how they all manage to make the show pay. They can't stand out, they just blend in to each other, just another stall with the same range of bandages or plasters. And I know you don't go to Germany for the food (unless that is, you're massively into meat and potato) but come on guys, not everyone wants a bratwurst or a burger. 

Speaking of food, breakfast in Germany's always an interesting experience. I mean, who eats lemon drizzle cake with breakfast? Who thought I know, this is what people want: uber-strong coffee; cream; ham; boiled eggs; yoghurt in every possible flavour; lemon drizzle cake; bread and watered-down fruit juice. I'd say it was just this particularly hotel, but past experience tells me not. Cake for breakfast is a German thing.... 

So where's the chaos? Germany, after all, is famed for its efficiency. Well chaos is what I arrived back to.... Sirane's taken over next door, people are on the move, boxes were everywhere, organised chaos about summed it up. But amongst it all my desk was still where I'd left it. Happy days, I guess.....

MARK LINGARD, MARKETING

 

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    Sirane's divisions - food packaging, medical, horticultural and industrial

    Sirane Ltd. Stafford Park 6, Telford, Shropshire, TF3 3AT. Telephone +44 (0)1952 230055